Colorado. New Mexico. Michigan. Germany. Those are just a few of the places that UVM M.S. Electrical Engineering (MSEE) students spent the summer of 2018. But instead of vacationing, they were working at internships that proved to be both professionally and personally rewarding

The College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences (CEMS) Career Readiness Program, serves both graduate and undergraduate students, providing career advising and support for internship, co-op, and job placement. Additionally the program host events such as the Engineering and Tech Fair where students have the opportunity to engage with local and national companies on the UVM campus.  According to Lauren Petrie, Coordinator of the Career Readiness Program there is “a large demand from employers looking to engage with students directly in the college.”  

Graduate students Nawaf Nazir and Andrew Klem spent their summer at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado. Nazir, whose research is focused on developing algorithms for online optimization of distribution of energy systems, knew it would be a great opportunity to learn more about renewable energy integration. “I worked with some of the most talented people in my field and experienced topnotch research being conducted in this field,” he says. “It was also my first time visiting a National Lab and I enjoyed it very much. Visiting and living in Colorado was one of the best aspects of my experience.” Now, Nazir is conducting collaborative research with NREL, with the potential to work there in the future.

Meanwhile, at Los Alamos National Lab (LANL) in Los Alamos, New Mexico, Mollyrose Kelly-Gorham researched the relationships between power network vulnerability and network properties. “One inspiring aspect of working at LANL was the diverse interests of the other interns in my office, who were passionate about everything from astronomy to simulating proteins related to cancer research,” says Kelly-Gorham, who recently submitted a paper from the experience to a power systems conference.

“I was excited to be able to use UVM’s complex systems courses to use in the network analysis I was performing and to get the opportunity to work on the high performing computers at the lab.”

“These internships are often discovered through the faculty mentors for the graduate students,” explains Petrie. “The faculty mentors are often working with industry and national lab partners that host graduate student interns during the summer.”

With the support of the CEMS Career Readiness Program CEMS graduate students have landed jobs with companies such as LORD MicroStrain, GlobalFoundries, Johns Hopkins University, IBM, Intel, UTC Aerospace, NXP Semiconductors, Qualcomm, Galen Healthcare Solutions, Green Mountain Semiconductors, and Packetized Energy.

MSEE student Micah Botkin-Levy split his time between Germany and Palo Alto. At the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, he worked on applying an optimization algorithm to the electric vehicle charging coordination problem he’s working on for his thesis. In Palo Alto, Botkin-Levy helped the Electric Power Research Institute overhaul its StorageVet, a publicly available energy storage valuation tool.

“The faculty in the college play a significant role in helping students get placed with industry partners ,” says Petrie. In part thanks to Assistant Professor Hamid Ossareh’s collaboration with Ford Motor Company, Joycer Osorio found himself in Dearborn, Michigan, working as a control engineer for the Applied Optimal Systems and Control group. Among his tasks were helping system identification based on the nonlinear dynamic equations that describe a turbocharged gasoline engine. “It was very interesting to learn from people who have spent decades doing research for the automotive industry,” says Osorio, who was able to network and get experience and data for his Ph.D. “Having meetings with these people and being able to have discussions with them was a very fulfilling experience.”


Sarah Tuff Dunn